IT services have always been an important focus for companies and organizations of all sizes. With cloud computing increasingly being discussed among IT professionals, traditional ways of acquiring and delivering IT services change. The possibility of separating hardware from software made an important impact to all the aspects of business IT. Data and applications moved from their traditional hardware setting – into the cloud.
In April this year, Gartner Inc. released a research in which it outlined five trends which can affect cloud strategy up to 2015. The research emphasizes the importance of continual monitoring and updating cloud strategy in order to achieve full cost benefits and use important market opportunities. It is certain that cloud computing will have an important impact onto IT in future several years. However the real nature of this impact can only be determined through thorough researches.
David Cearly, vice president and Gartner Fellow argues that ‘Cloud computing has a significant potential impact on every aspect of IT and how users access applications, information and business services.’ David Mitchell Smith, vice president and Gartner Fellow believes that the trend will continue to grow and change rapidly which will make it one of Gartner’s top 10 trends to research and monitor in future.
Though it is hard to be precise about the paths cloud evolution might take, Gartner addresses the most important subtrends related to cloud computing. The following five things are expected to have the greatest impact in the following three years.
Decision making frameworks. Cloud computing is well known for the benefits it can bring to businesses. Affordability, agility and reduced complexity are most frequently quoted as major advantages of the cloud. However, all the advantages should be thoroughly examined in relation to possible concerns such as security, lack of transparency, performance and availability.
Focus on hybrid cloud. An increasing attention is paid to hybrid cloud. Hybrid cloud is a customized combination of private and public cloud adjusted to companies’ individual needs. Possible combinations of these two clouds are numerous and this is why it is so difficult to give a proper definition of hybrid cloud. However, as it becomes increasingly used it might become easier to identify and define particular patterns in applying internal and external resources. Eventually it may be possible to provide guidelines and standards for deploying applications in hybrid environment.
Cloud service brokerage CSB to assist consumption. The rate of cloud adoption increases and so does the necessity for consumption assistance. The interest in Cloud Service Brokerage grew in the last couple of years and Gartner expects this trend to continue. CSB is a provider that plays an intermediary role in cloud computing and Gartner encourages IT departments to start positioning themselves as CSBs. This means that they should involve in purchasing processes and collaborate with business departments.
Cloud-centric design. The cloud can reach its full potential only if the applications are designed in such a way to suit particular characteristics of a specific cloud model. Enterprises seek the ways to migrate their workloads to the cloud and Gartner encourages them to focus more on creating cloud-optimized applications. This way they will be able to exploit cloud to deliver global-class applications.
Data center and operational models to change. Now public cloud acts as a service provider which manages data center and operational models. Even the enterprises that invest in building private centers should consider cloud computing concepts when planning their investment. They should be influenced by implementation models that are used by cloud service providers to make sure that agility and efficiency will be as high as possible.